Chicks occasionally hatch with
crooked feet. This almost always is a hatch problem and not genetic.
The good news is how easy and
quickly you can permanently fix your little buddy's feet.
is how to cure crooked feet: make tape sandals!
of all and most importantly, be gentle. It is easy to stress a chicken
enough to kill it or make it susceptible to disease.
Use tape with strong
enough adhesion to firmly stick to itself but with weak enough adhesion
to easily and gently remove from a chick's foot; masking tape and
cellophane tape do nicely.
Cut two pieces of tape,
place one under the crooked foot with the sticky side up, and place the
other above the crooked foot with the sticky side down.
Spread the toes in
their correct positions.
Join the two pieces of
tape between all the toes and outside the foot.
Trim the tape to the
shape of the foot but be sure to leave enough tape outside the foot. If
you trim too close to the foot the tape might come off.
Don't just ignore how
pitifully the chick hops and complains however this is part of the
healing process. The chick usually does just fine after a few hours.
I've never seen it happen but perhaps a chick will refuse to move and
not eat or drink. Tend to that with gentle help or remove the sandal.
Remove the sandal when
the foot is fixed. When is that? The earlier you start, the sooner the
foot is fixed. If you start 1 or 2 days after hatch, 2 to 3 days of
sandals usually are enough. Whatever the duration, keep the chick in
sandals until you have fixed the foot.